The Honourable Judith Guichon was sworn-in as the 29th Lieutenant Governor of British Columbia on November 2nd, 2012.  Prior to this appointment, she owned and operated Gerard Guichon Ranch in the Nicola Valley in the BC Interior.  The Guichon family has ranched in the area since 1878 and Her Honour's father-in-law was awarded the Order of Canada in 1974 for his leadership in the Cattleman's Associations and his contribution to agriculture in Canada.


 Her Honour studied Holistic Management, a farming method which promotes sustainable management of livestock by emphasizing their natural habitat. Along with her late husband, commercial pilot Lawrence Guichon, she introduced Holistic Management to the ranchers of BC.  Two of her four children now manage the ranch with a 700 head cow-calf and 700 yearling operation.

Her Honour also served on the local hospital board and Community Health Council and was on the Community Health Foundation board.  Prior to this, she served as a 4-Hleader and started a recycling society in Merritt. She also served as a director of the Fraser Basin Council of BC, director of the Grasslands Conservation Council of BC, and was a member of the Nicola Water Use Management planning committee and played the flute in the Nicola Valley Community Band.

Her Honour also served on the Provincial Task Force on Species at Risk and completed a two-year term as the president of the BC Cattlemen's Association.  She has also been part of the Ranching Task Force for BC and the BC Agri-Food Trade Advisory Council.

Born in Montreal and raised on a farm near Hawkesbury, ON, Her Honour moved to BC in 1972.  She and her husband, Bruno Mailloux, maintain a residence in the Nicola Valley.

Her Honour started by noticing that Harbourside was the first Breakfast Club and she thought she'd fit in because early mornings are the best time to meet and get things done, especially after years of rising very early on the ranch!  She also noted that the last time she spoke to Rotarians, it was at the Vancouver Aquarium and she had to compete with some very rude sea lions.

She noted the Tourism Victoria was started in 1947 -- long before she thought there WAS tourism in Victoria.

She highlighted that our club was chartered in 1980 with Fred Bartlett as our first president (and District Governor in 1987-88)  She also noted that Rotary International allowed women to belong to Rotary in 1987 and Harbourside had its first women members in 1989 (only 70 years after getting the vote!).

In her hometown, Rotary is very involved and funds a bus for Extended Health, Meals on Wheels and even bused the Community Band to play in the gardens.

During her time as Lieutenant Governor, she plans to continue her predecessor's work re:  Literacy, working with District Governor Bob Blacker to build libraries in remote communities.  The concept of 'library' has grown to include computers, modular buildings which are used for other purposes.  For example, UBC dental students completing internships and providing dental care in these remote communities.  Three have opened across the province and 5 more are in the works.  Considering that from initial concept to cutting the ribbon on the first library took only 1 year, it exemplifies the Positive Power of Partnerships.

Besides literacy, she will  have three other priorities:

  1. Stewards of the Future:  a holistic approach towards a healthy land, a healthy community and healthy people.  She has learned that overgrazing is a function of time, not numbers.  It took 25 years to fully implement the approach on their ranch, so she understands that a change in culture occurs with small changes over a long time.  She sees her role to be a catalyst to bring groups together to work together to strengthen our land, communities and people.
  2. Leadership and Mentorship
  3. Music and Art

All of this will be accomplished with the new 3R's -- Respect, Responsibility and Relationships.

Doug Lunam presented Her Honour with a Paul Harris Fellowship at the instigation of Judd Buchanan and Colin Smith.  He noted that our club has sent $25,000 to Rotary International in the past year.  Colin Smith presented Her Honour with a pin and certificate to commemorate the Fellowship.

Her Honour accepted the Fellowship with pride, saying Rotary is an organization that has world-wide recognition and she was aware of Rotary's work to eradicate polio as one of her childhood friends was one of the last cases of polio in Canada.